'Immortal Chaplains' poster

A poster of the 'Immortal Chaplains' as they were called after giving their lives in saving others during an attack on their ship almost 80 years ago. Photo by Afiq Hisham.  

GREAT FALLS, Mont. - Sunday marks a special occasion for the local American Legion, as they prepare to honor four chaplains for their brave sacrifice in World War II. 

While organizers can’t host the event at Christ United Methodist Church because of COVID-related closures this year, they say they’re doing what they can in honoring the ‘Immortal Chaplains.’ 

These men, all from different walks of life, gave their lives evacuating others during a torpedo attack on their ship the USAT Dorchester in 1943. 

With a streaming option this time around, the Post 341’s adjutant tells Montana Right Now she started the local program in 2011 after hearing about the men’s selflessness. 

“It just struck me at heart that these four guys knew they were going to die and [helped out) anyway, regardless of the fact that they’re non-combative chaplains,” said Kim Kay Carol McCarty-Martin. 

McCarty-Martin says while they’ll still follow social distancing guidelines with masks and spaced-off seats, this ceremony helps people connect, reminding them they always have a place in the community regardless of background. 

Whether you want to go in person or stream it online, the commemoration starts Sunday at 2:00 pm in First Baptist Church (525 2nd Ave N). You can find the upcoming stream on their official Facebook page and YouTube Channel

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